The main causes of early gray hair in men

There is a stereotype that gray hair in men is a sign of aging and age-related changes. In fact, hair loses pigment for various reasons, and this is not always associated with the years. Consider when early gray hair may appear in men, the causes of gray hair, and whether it is worth worrying about this symptom.

At what age can gray hair appear

young gray-haired man

To understand how and why gray hair appears, you need to know the composition of the hair and the intracellular processes that occur in them. Inside the hair shaft is a protein — a protein that contains the coloring enzyme melanin. It is divided into 2 types — eumelanin and pheomelanin. The first of them is responsible for the dark hair, for example, in black there is no pheomelanin at all. When the production of melanin stops, the hair loses its color and gray hair appears. It can be at 20 or at 70 — everything is individual.

In medicine and cosmetology, gray hair is considered early if it appears from 25 to 35 years old. After that, the loss of hair color is considered a normal life process in the body. Men usually turn gray earlier than women, and some of them already have a high percentage of gray hair by the age of 40.

Children can also have gray hair, although this phenomenon is extremely rare. It occurs due to the tightness that air bubbles form in the hair follicles due to stress and there is not enough melanin. This is not a physical or mental developmental disorder. The problem is more often a cosmetic problem. Many children are often nervous about anything until their nervous systems are formed. Having multiple white or gray hairs in a child is not a cause for concern.

An interesting fact: there is an opinion that a gray hair cannot be pulled out, because several gray hairs will grow in its place. In fact, this is not true, because only 1 hair grows from one follicle. If the hair is pulled out, regardless of the color, nothing else will grow in its place.

Why do young people get gray hair?

It turned out that colorless hair is not a sign of age. People can turn gray at different ages, even at the very youngest (during school years). The presence of melanin is influenced by many factors, which determine the age criteria for gray hair.

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Scientists fail to explain exactly why hair turns gray early because of the large number of factors that influence this process:

  1. genetics and grayingGenetic predisposition. The functionality of melanin is at the genetic level, so hair color depends on genes. If at least one of the parents by heredity has early gray hair in the family, it is possible that this will not affect the child. He can start turning gray at 15, maybe at 30.
  2. Stress or other disturbances in the functioning of the nervous system also affect all intracellular processes of the body. Stopping the production of melanin in protein is no exception. There are many examples when a person saddled in the shortest possible time, regardless of age, due to a strong shock, for example, the loss of a loved one.
  3. Diets, unhealthy diet, violation of the regimen, taking medications or drugs are directly related to hair color. With improper nutrition, the required amount of substances does not enter the body, without which the normal functioning of all organs and systems is impossible.

If at an early age a large amount of gray hair appears on the head for no apparent reason, you need to consult a doctor for an examination. Perhaps the reason lies in health. It is not uncommon for the appearance of gray hair to signal some disturbances in the functioning of the body, as a result of which this or that disease may develop.

Will you go to your doctor to find out the cause of your gray hair?

Yes No

Why does hair turn gray

Let’s consider the most common reasons due to which gray hair can occur at any age, regardless of gender.

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early gray hair in men cause of smokingSmoking cigarettes, hookah, drinking alcoholic beverages or drugs negatively affects the work of the whole organism. They disrupt the respiratory system, which is why they provoke oxygen starvation. As a result, a decrease in heart rate and a deterioration in the functioning of the cardiovascular system.

According to statistics, representatives of the stronger sex drink and smoke more often, so gray hair appears more often in men than in women.


There are a number of chronic and acute diseases that can cause skin discoloration, blemishes, and hair discoloration:

  • vitiligo — dermatologicalwhy do men go bald due to illness am, a non-infectious disease caused by a local violation of pigment production;
  • versicolor — fungal infection of the skin, nails or hair. As a result of the disease, there is a violation of pigmentation in the hair shaft;
  • anemia — a condition characterized by a lack of hemoglobin protein in the blood. And hemoglobin performs a transport function and carries oxygen throughout the body;
  • gastric ulcer — a chronic disease that occurs with inflammatory lesions of the soft tissues of the walls of the stomach. With exacerbation, bleeds;
  • hormonal imbalance and disorders in the thyroid gland leads to the failure of all organs and systems. In this case, the pigment responsible for the hair color may be lost. Sometimes in men, hair turns gray during adolescence;
  • albinism — This is a condition in which the pigment melanin in the body is absent from birth. Because of this, the skin is pale and the hair (all over the body) is colorless.

Other causes of early gray hair in men can be medications, cosmetic and medical procedures:

  • early gray hair in men causesMedication’s antimicrobial and antibacterial action, which completely change the microflora. Because of this, metabolism can be disrupted, affecting the production of melanin;
  • chemotherapy Is a treatment with specialized agents that kill malignant cells. It is used for stages 1 and 2 of oncological diseases;
  • X-rays and other radiation should not be done more often as 1-2 times a year due to the risk of intracellular metabolic disorders.

Race and skin color

men of different races turn gray in different ways

Oddly enough, but race affects the age of gray hair. The white race begins to turn gray on average at the age of 30. Africans turn gray after 40-50 years. Dark skin color is caused by a lot of melanin. In this regard, the hair is discolored later than in white-skinned people. All these data are average, because each person has his own characteristics, starting from which a number of changes take place in his body.

Interestingly: the Georgians have gray hair on their temples at a young age, from 23-25 ​​years old, which is the norm for their people.

Men and women

According to statistics, men turn gray earlier than women. American scientists conducted studies in which 4000 women and men from different countries took part. 74% of gray-haired people are representatives of the 45+ age category. There are 8% more men among them.

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Stress and psychology

early gray hair in men causes stress

For decades, there has been an opinion that stress is the cause of the appearance of gray hair. In fact, this has not been confirmed by anything and has not been scientifically proven. This theory appeared due to the fact that the work of the nervous system regulates almost all intracellular processes. When the central nervous system malfunctions, metabolic disorders occur. For this reason, the production of melanin can stop, and the hair begins to turn gray.

Gray-haired = old?

Since gray hair can appear at an early age in women and men, it can be concluded that this has nothing to do with old age. On the contrary, scientists have the opinion that people who lose their hair color early live longer. This is because hair color is acquired through a chemical reaction between the pigment melanin and the antioxidant glutathione. It performs a protective function in the body and neutralizes the negative effect of free radicals. The sooner the hair turns gray, the more glutathione will accumulate in the body to keep it normal.

In some peoples, it is believed that if the hair of young people turns gray — this is a sign of longevity.

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